With many reports showing that interactions with police can go awry, you may be considering whether or not it is legal to record police should you have your own run-in with them. Staying calm in any scenario is important to reduce the chances of an unnecessary escalation, but filming may provide some with comfort in having a solid piece of evidence should they need it.
Florida Statute 934.03 prohibits the international interception of any electronic communication, whether via wire or orally. Violations can result in a third-degree felony. However, there is an exception to this rule – if all parties to the communication give their consent. If verbal communication is protected under this statute, the individual speaking must have reasonable expectations of privacy. Society must also see that expectation as reasonable given the circumstances.
This statue can get confusing, but most people may consider it if they feel a routine traffic stop occurs. Taking photos of an accident or where you stopped at a stoplight or stop sign does not fall into this category if it does not involve anyone else. With simple traffic violations, a Miami traffic attorney may be able to help.
To put it simply, if you are in a public place where others can see what is occurring, and you are legally allowed to be in that place, you may record if it does not interfere with police activity. If you are on private property, you must ask permission first.
Even if you have the legal right to record, proceed carefully. Before recording, say so.
Like those that would need a red light camera violation attorney, most traffic offenses will not need police recording to support claims. Always proceed with caution when filming police and speak with your lawyer further about your legal rights.